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Introducing the Masters in Mechanics Video Series!

Our acclaimed seminars are now an amazing new video series.

By December 18, 2014 September 26th, 2018 codenews, News

Masters in Mechanics Video Series!

Sign up today for an amazing journey of monthly learning!

(Learn more here!)

Or, buy the Antigravity standalone download:

Antigravity: By Demand, On-Demand!

Our acclaimed Masters in Mechanics seminars are now an amazing monthly video series! And we’re jumpstarting the series with our incredible 4-hour Antigravity lecture.

The extensive Antigravity investigation is organized into 25 chapters, and includes a course pack of 70+ slow-mo videos with tablature and insanely detailed performance notes.

Delivering Antigravity live was an amazing way to develop the seminar. But as Troy began staggering into the office baggy-eyed and delirious from marathon four-hour sessions, only to read piles of emails from viewers who couldn’t make the seminar, but still wanted to watch it. It was clear there were still plenty of viewers we’d never be able to fit onto our calendar.

So, with dozens of Antigravities under our belt, we began translating the many live versions of Antigravity to an accessible video version, and we’re thrilled with how it’s turned out.

Cracking the Code: Farther, Better, Faster, Longer

But the new, more accessible Antigravity lecture isn’t the only thing we’re excited to announce. We’re also introducing the Masters in Mechanics Video Series — a new subscription option that delivers an awesome new advanced lecture every month. This is an incredible resource for guitar analysis, and an incredible value.

ANTIGRAVITY, CHAPTER 19: In this chapter of Antigravity, we take a look at the amazing Vinnie Moore and his legendary taste and precision.

You want more — and we heard you. The Masters in Mechanics Series will allow us to make even more great stuff, and get it to you faster. One thing we learned from delivering the live seminars is that there’s a ton of interest in super high nutritional content, targeted seminar-style investigation.

What’s Coming Next?

Leveraging the speed of the seminar format, we can deliver a new investigation each month, on a range of fascinating topics that merge the musical with the mechanical.

Inside the Volcano — next on our list!

INSIDE THE VOLCANO: Next on our list of monthly lectures for the Masters in Mechanics Series!

Of course, the studio version of Inside the Volcano, our exhaustive live seminar on the Yngwie picking strategy, is coming up next. It’s the ultimate foundation for understanding not just Yngwie but legendary downward pickslanters like George Benson, Eric Johnson, and so many others. In Death by Sequence, we’ll tackle the always-thorny fundamental units of fretboard sequencing, including threes, fours, fives, sixes, and more.

Sweeping is an enormously deep topic we’ve only touched upon in the Cracking the Code show. In our Masters in Mechanics sweeping seminar, Powers of Two we’ll investigate artful combinations of two-way sweeping, two-way pickslanting, and alternate picking, that empower the mind-boggling fretboard excursions of fusion masters like Frank Gambale and bop virtuosos like Jimmy Bruno. Check out the Masters in Mechanics page for even more detail.

And if there’s a topic you’d really like to see us tackle, by all means, feel free to send us your suggestions.


  • JimV says:

    I just signed up for the master in mechanics series and it’s fantastic. Hours of the stuff that guitarists live for! But I have a silly question: I have the all the great antigravity chapters, I have all the 25 pages of performance notes, I have all 70-something incredibly detailed close up videos. But I can’t find the notation. Can you help me find the notation? Thanks, -Jim

  • Troy, this series is like crack cocaine for guitarists. I just can’t get enough of it! 🙂 I’ve even managed to get my drummer hooked on the series as well.

    Loving this first month’s session. What I thought was really cool was that I was revisiting “Technical Difficulties” a few days ago, specifically working on the big scale run at the end of the first section. I was playing around with different pick slants to see which ones made things easier, and then you go ahead and look at the exact run in Chapter 9. Awesome!

    Can’t wait to see what else you have to reveal in future sessions.

    PS: My junior guitar class (~10 y.o.) keeping begging me to ask you when the next episode in Season 2 will be out. No pressure 😀

    • Troy Grady says:

      Thanks Graehme! That’s awesome. Someone on YouTube once accused us of making a guitar show “for 9 year-olds”. To which I say — yes! And 39 year-olds, 49 year-olds, and so on. Three should be out soon. Thanks for watching!

  • Just got to the chapters on swiping and I have to say that my mind is completely blown. I was literally freaking out when I understood the concept. Like yourself, I’ve actually been doing this intuitively for years. However, my left-hand muting technique wasn’t good enough to keep the strings quiet, so I would hear it as a mistake in my alternate picking. It just makes so much sense!

    This has definitely been one hell of a great Christmas present.

    Merry Christmas, Troy.


    • Troy Grady says:

      Awesome. The crazy thing about swiping is, when you do it correctly, you can’t tell it’s happening. So just because you hear it one aspect of your playing doesn’t mean it’s not present elsewhere. It just means you may be doing it more stealthily in other phrases — in which case, if it sounds good, it is good!

  • John McMInn says:

    Hi Code Team! Merry New Year ! 2015
    My Question is… What is the Difference between the 15$ Master Mechanic Monthly ,and the $70 Download? Will i Get all 25 chapters with the 15$ pass?
    Does that mean a $15 pass to the website for “Member Section” Opposed to just viewing the Free content ?

    • Troy Grady says:

      Hi John! It’s the same, complete version of Antigravity either way. The difference here is really that some viewers might just want a copy of Antigravity, and not want to sign up for a monthly series. Yes, the series will touch on new topics each month, but it will also cost more in the long run. So for someone who just wants the fundamentals of alternate picking as a one-time download, we wanted to make that option available. Also, note that if someone signs up for the series next month, they can download the current month’s seminar, but the previous month’s seminars — like Antigravity — will be streaming only. So again, the download option is a simple get it / own kind of option.

  • Scott Hughes says:

    Happy Holidaze Troy! I signed up for the monthly subscription and have just finished watching the “Antigravity” videos. This is an OBSCENE amount of information for $15 (even if one were to just pay for the $70 download, it’s still quite a bargain). I always felt like the alternate-picking ship set sail without me long ago, but now I can really see why certain things were quite easy for me while others seemed impossibly hard. All I need now is the time machine so I can return to 1988 and make everything right with my playing 🙂 Thanks for all your hard work with this stuff. Looking forward to next month….

    • Brendan Schlagel says:

      Hey Scott, thanks for the comment, glad to hear you’re getting a lot out of the Antigravity seminar and finding it an awesome value!

    • Troy Grady says:

      Hi Scott! Thanks for picking up Antigravity, and glad to hear the material resonates. When you find the time-travelling Hot Tub, please let me know — I have an urgent message for my teenage self about mullets, and the fashion dangers they pose!

  • Kyle says:

    It’s hard to get across just how eye-opening and helpful working with the Antigravity stuff has been for me. The thing that’s had the most immediate impact is the clear progression that’s laid out for transitioning from one-way to two-way pickslanting.

    • Brendan Schlagel says:

      Thanks Kyle — nice to hear it’s been useful so far…and of course, we’ve got lots more to come!

    • Troy Grady says:

      Awesome thanks Kyle! Yes we’ve tried to provide some structure in the course of the lecture, because it’s a lot to take in and one obvious question is where to begin. Starting with the two one-way modes is one logical way to approach it, and something everyone should do at some point.

  • Andrew Briggs says:

    Well after some confusion as to the difference between the $15/month option and the $70 option I chose the latter and I’m very glad I did! I’m blown away by what you’ve observed and figured out here Troy and also just as importantly, how you’ve put the material together from a teaching perspective. Brilliant stuff. Cheers Andrew

    • Brendan Schlagel says:

      Hi Andrew, thanks for the feedback, and glad it’s proving helpful. Just an FYI — the $15/month Masters in Mechanics subscription actually does include the entire Antigravity seminar — we wanted to lead with a super value for the first month to encourage subscription signups, but we realize not everyone wants that monthly commitment, thus the a la carte option. If you’d prefer to switch just let me know in the next few days and I can refund the Antigravity purchase while you grab the subscription instead. Sorry for any confusion 🙂

    • Troy Grady says:

      Thanks Andrew!

  • Ralph Werlen says:

    Hi Troy, I’m so impressed with all the great stuff you are sharing with us, you are an awesome player… Let me just ask a little question, I really like your sound, what amp/distortion are you using ? Thanks…

    • Brendan Schlagel says:

      Hey Ralph — we use the Cornford Hellcat for most of our soundtrack work. From Troy: “I have a bunch of amps but the Hellcat is very controlled in the bass and the fizz parts of the spectrum, so I don’t really EQ or compress it much, if ever. (That’s one of the reasons I like it!)” Thanks, and glad you hear you’re enjoying our material!

  • Stefan Vass says:

    Hey Troy!

    I just subscribed and watched Antigravity and it’s awesome!

    My Question is: How do you suggest playing sequences where you alternate between two adjacent strings, one note per string. Two Way Pickslanting as well?
    There’s this passage from Petrucci’s Rock Discipline where he does this and he doesn’t seem to be rotating, at least to my eyes, check it out:

    I really struggle with the rotation mechanic if I have to do it for every note in a sequence like this.

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

    • Troy Grady says:

      Hi Stefan! Thanks for signing up. Indeed, full-time rotation is how that is done, and why you’re seeing it in John’s technique there. But it’s important to be practical. This type of sequence is really quite uncommon in rock and metal, and specifically arranging pieces that move back and forth between two strings really doesn’t make much sense if there are other arrangements that would also work. It’s much more common in bluegrass, and if you check out the Orrin Star clip on the Season 3 page, you’ll see a classic example of how this is done. One-note-per-string alternate picking is a foundational technique in bluegrass, but they’re not doing it at ridiculous tempos, and they’re using big rotational movements and relatively large pickstrokes to get a large, room-filling acoustic sound. So it makes a lot of sense for them.

      • Damn. I just checked out the video of Orrin and he is one hell of a great player.

        Will there be a Code Archive series that features him? I’d love to learn some of those licks.

        • Troy Grady says:

          Orrin is great! Would love to do more stuff with him. It’s generally on our Masters in Mechanics calendar to tackle the bluegrass patterns when we get the time.

      • Stefan Vass says:

        Hi Troy, thanks for your quick answer!
        I’m primarily a blues player and this problem occurs in a common blues run that I have been having problems with for all my playing life:

        |————————————————————————5———–5—- etc. ——–|

        When you start on a downstroke, you get this kind of “inside picking” that Petrucci talks about on the notes between strings, like:


        Now, that’s just four notes, but enough to throw me off. Since I’ve watched your material, I am trying to play it with rotational two way pickslanting but I can’t seem to rotate my arm fast enough, it tenses up and the rotation generally seems like slow movement, like I’m dragging a weight around while doing it. Players like Stevie Ray Vaughan play runs like this at blazing speed so there must be a way to do it though.

        • Alex says:

          Hi Stefan,

          That lick works much better with upward pick slanting (at least in my experience). Try starting it with an upstroke OR adding a hammer-on on the first string OR leaving the first note out. This way, the inside picking string changes that give you trouble will become outside picking and you’ll navigate them with one-way pick slanting (upward).

          If you want to do it with downward pick slanting, you’ll have to add a hammer on, on the last note, every time you have 4 notes on the same string (e.g. 5 – 8 – 5 – hammer 8). This will allow you to use outside picking on the 4 notes that give you trouble and the lick again, will become a one-way pick slanting lick.

        • Troy Grady says:

          Hi Stefan / Alex-

          Any time you have two notes an adjacent strings, and you move back and forth, that’s a two-way pickslanting sequence. Whether it’s inside or outside picking doesn’t change that fact — two way rotation is always required to avoid hitting the strings. For example, if you do this with uwps, you’ll be likely to hit the lower string on the way back. If you do it with dwps, you’ll hit the upper string on the way over. In both cases you can use swiping, as we discuss in Antigravity, to mute those strings and play through them. This is how the Paul Gilbert lick is actually done, and you can hear very clearly on Intense Rock that the lower string is being hit on the way back. Many players do this without realizing it — including the greats. But the textbook solution is full-time rotation, as you see in the Petrucci example.

          Yes, moving back and forth between two strings is mechanically expensive on the guitar. This difficulty is not related to inside/outside picking — it’s related to two-way pickslanting. And there is no reason to arrange fretting like this if you can avoid it. The whole reason players like Yngwie and Eric Johnson have the efficiency they do is because they are intuitive enough to work with the design of the instrument rather than against it. There is tremendous value in this.

          • Stefan Vass says:

            Oh man, this is so cool that you take your time to explain this to us!
            But now I’m confused. How would I swipe this? If I start on a downstroke with dwps and do this:
            I can swipe the low E. But I will end on a downstroke, buried below the strings and unable to swipe back to the previous string against my pickslant to continue the pattern.

            An example is the final run in the Seek & Destroy Solo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-tvJcTPxHc#t=244
            I’ve checked on several live videos and Kirk Hammett does not seem to be rotating his arm at all, like here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVjYAbg5O_Q#t=1258

            Greetings from Austria!

          • Ron Gardner says:

            Love the series and looking forward to more!

            The most common use of picking two adjacent strings in shred/metal/neoclassical is usually some sort of pedal point lick where you pedal a higher note against an ascending or descending lower note on an adjacent string or vice versa. Typically these runs are fleeting because you run out of finger length and have to skip strings against the pedaled note or change positions. Troy is dead on the money about always having a rotation involved, but the rotation (in my playing, anyway) usually happens at the thumb joint.

            My picking is primarily “slightly” upward slanted (yes, Paul Gilbert) so when picking with what I call the knife edge, or leading edge of the pick downward (ascending in pitch) , the pick glides over the strings. When I hit the top of a run and pick a descending run, sometimes it only involves a little “push” of the thumb to orient the pick flat and center or slightly downward.

            I equate it to holding a pair of chopsticks…which I’m horrible at, but the mechanic on the chopstick that moves back and forth is close to what I’m describing.

            The subscription is well worth the 15.00 a month! The tablature exercises and the glimpses of “how the masters” do it is priceless anyway. Troy is like the Tony Horton of pick mechanics. Watching all these greats and Troy’s passion for the mechanics involved will motivate even the most advanced players to dust off their chops and seek new face melting speeds. And I was a skeptic.

  • Stefan Vass says:

    Hey Ron,
    what you are saying makes sense, however as I said, Kirk Hammett plays this exact run (which is not a pedal point lick but goes at least across five strings) at the end of the Seek & Destroy Solo, check it out at 20:58: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVjYAbg5O_Q#t=1258

    I’ve downloaded the video in HD, slowed it down and he’s not making ANY rotational movements neither at the arm nor the finger joints, so there must be another way to play this!

  • Stefan Vass says:

    Actually, here is the lick extracted fast and slow 🙂

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